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Key dates over December 1914

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Lives lost on this day: 1

9th December 1914 - The Ghurkas and their kukris

Rolling casualty count: 542

1st Batt: Brigade Reserve Billets; 2nd Batt: In billets at Bailleul; 3rd Batt:Relieved 7th R. Fusrs in trenches E of Kemmel.

Deadly work with Kukris: Very quietly, but very surely, the Indians have been adding to their record of military achievements. On Sunday night they prepared a surprise for the Germans, one of their unpleasant little surprises. All the evening our Engineers kept the enemy on the jump with bombs, star shells, and other aids to trench and night warfare. In the early hours of Monday morning, when it was considered that the effect of this bombardment had considerably shaken up the other side and given them a particularly sleepless night, the Ghurkas left their trenches with knives and bayonets, and crept over the intervening, water-logged, and cold ground like panthers stalking a prey. Then suddenly they opened an awful hullaballoo and fell upon the Germans in their own trenches. It was a hand-to-hand fight, and no troops in the world could equal the Gurkhas at that kind of warfare. The kukris did much swift havoc. While the first line of trenches were thus being stormed- with grim success- other companies of Indians charged forward, yelling and shouting, and the Germans took to their heels and did not stop until they came under the effective support of their own artillery. The result is that the Indians have gained some valuable positions, which we now hold, in the direction of Lille.

8th (Reserve) Battalion: 16 recruits joined on Monday and Tuesday, making a total of 49 towards the 100 required.

On Tuesday, Mr and Mrs Cosnett, of Church Street, received a letter from His Majesty the King, expressing his appreciation of the fact that they have got seven sons serving in the Army. In the letter the King expresses the hope that they may be spared through the present war.

Concert for Territorials: Tonight, the Worcester Musical Society will give a concert at the Territorial Recreation Room, Public Hall.

Belgians leave the Infirmary: 24 of the wounded Belgians leave the Infirmary today for Messrs. Cadbury Bros’ Convalescent Home, at Froome Bank, Bromyard, where they have experienced much kindness at the hands of the medical and nursing staff. Many citizens have also shown them real practical sympathy, not only by personal visits, but by sending a large quantity of luxuries. The Matron states that she has received a steady supply of all kinds of luxuries, as well as boots, clothing etc. As there are likely to be 50 wounded soldiers in the institution – English and Belgian – for some time to come, any further gifts will be most gratefully accepted. For the moment, sufficient cigarettes have been received , but the supply of tobacco and pipes has run short. As in the past, it is believed that the mere mention of this will be sufficient, and donors will know that they are doing something to cheer these suffering warriors. Cakes, jam, fruit, etc are always acceptable.

Information researched by Sue Redding